Player Profile #11 mirrorshades
What is your name?
William, but I go by Will. Not Bill. In fact, it annoys me when people who don’t know me try to invoke a sense of familiarity by calling me “Bill”. (Usually telemarketers or other people calling to ask me for money.)
How did you decide upon your Blitz nickname?
I’ve used “mirrorshades” as my online handle for a number of years now. I like to read cyberpunk science fiction, and Mirrorshades is the name of an anthology. If you see a user named mirrorshades on another forum… chances are it’s me.
What ladders are you represented on?
Right now, just the HPS Operational Campaigns ladder… I have a few other wargames that I play on occasion, but it’s primarily the HPS ones. I play Campaign 1776 in the CCC, so I may at some point join the Napoleonic ladder, too.
What is your favourite PC War-game?
As mentioned, I like the HPS titles. Probably the one with the most hours spent, though, is Battle for Wesnoth. I don’t tend to have big chunks of free time; Wesnoth is pretty good for playing a few minutes at a time.
Who has been your hardest opponent?
I’ve got about 3 games against one person (through the Age of Rifles group on Yahoo) that I’ve managed to lose quite resoundingly… even one scenario that was heavily stacked in my favor!
How long have you been a member of the Blitz?
Oh, not long. A few weeks, maybe. Still relatively new to wargaming as a hobby (less than a year now).
What War interests you the most?
From a historical perspective, I enjoy reading about the American War for Independence. I also enjoy speculative/hypothetical writing and games dealing with a conventional World War III land war in Europe between NATO and Warsaw Pact forces.
If you could choose to be present at one historical event what would it be?
Can’t really think of one specifically, though I think it would be interesting to watch some big ship battles from the Age of Sail; so maybe the Battle of Trafalgar, to name one.
What is your favourite War movie?
Hard to pick just one… I really like Glory. Something about Ferris Beuller as a regiment commander makes me smile a little.
What do you snack on while gaming?
Not much… a lot of my wargaming is done on a laptop either in bed or on the couch. A cup of coffee is about all I can manage without being too sloppy. When hunger does strike, I usually find that putting peanut butter and shredded cheddar cheese in a tortilla and microwaving for a minute or so is a Good Thing. (Yeah, yeah, I know. But *try it* before you write it off as “gross”.)
What is your favourite and least favourite aspect of the Blitz website?
I haven’t really been around long enough to say; I do like that the forums are very active and full of people willing to help a newbie.
Do you own any war memorabilia?
Yes, my grandfather was a navigator/bombardier on a B-24 during World War II -- I have the knapsack he took with him on his missions, as well as many of the letters between he and my grandmother while he was away.
What is the best military book you have read?
In the fiction realm, I recently read and enjoyed Red Army by Ralph Peters. For non-fiction, I recently read Benedict Arnold’s Navy (did a review for Armchair General) and that was pretty good, too.
What do you think was the single most important event of WWII?
It’s extremely hard to say; I don’t feel I have near enough knowledge of WWII to give a proper answer. Maybe not a single “event”… but speaking as an American, I think it was extremely important for the troops fighting overseas to know that they had the complete, unfaltering support of everybody back home; and they came back home to hero’s welcomes.
What is the most interesting documentary you have ever watched?
Some years ago, I saw a documentary on the real story behind the movie Blackhawk Down that was very good. I forget what it was called, though… I was just kind of flipping through the channels and it happened to be on.
Which is your favourite HPS PzC title?
Don’t have a favorite from the Panzer Campaigns series proper (only have one game, and haven’t really played it yet); however, I’ve just picked up Danube Front ’85 from the Modern Campaigns and that’s probably where I’m spending most of my time these days.
Are there any war games catching your eye at present?
The problem is that I want to try all of them, but I don’t have the time to sit down and *learn* every game. I’ve downloaded about every free wargame there is, and I’ve even printed and cut out counters and maps for tabletop wargames. I usually end up learning just enough to get beat in whatever new game catches my fancy at the moment… so I’m really trying to avoid distraction and just focus on playing a very few games well. :)
What piece of wisdom would you like to pass on to your fellow Blitz members?
Be kind to newbies. At least let us learn the ropes before you crush us to smithereens with your Supply and HQ units!
(Um, and keep your powder dry. And uh, don’t take any wooden nickels. Avoid clichés like the plague. All that stuff.)